Australian cricket team arrives amidst security fearsSeptember 22nd, 2008 - 9:53 pm ICT by IANS
Mumbai, Sep 22 (IANS) The 15-member Australian cricket team led by Ricky Ponting arrived here amidst heavy security cover, following the bomb blasts in New Delhi and Islamabad, for the four-match Test series against India .Cricket Australia (CA), which scrapped its tour of Pakistan due to the security reasons earlier in the year, gave the green signal for the Indian tour that begins Oct 9 in Bangalore after a security review.
A suicide attack on the Marriott Hotel in the Pakistani capital of Islamabad Saturday that killed 53 people forced Ponting to admit fears pertaining the security before the team left Australia for the sub-continent trip.
“With the state of the world and the state of some of the countries that we’re playing in, it’s vitally important that me as captain and all the players in this national team are kept in the loop as often as possible,” Ponting was quoted as saying by the CA website.
“It is an absolute shame that things like this continue to happen in Pakistan because, believe it or not, as players you want to travel all round the world and you want to play in all the conditions around the world. Unfortunately right now at the moment there’s no way that we can be touring Pakistan,” he said.
The other three Tests will be at Mohali, Delhi and Nagpur.
The team will move to Jaipur for few days and then will fly to Hyderabad for a four-day match against Board President’s XI starting Oct 2.
“I’ve done it all day today, I’ve had a lot of discussions with my wife about those exact issues,” Ponting said in Sydney Sunday. “Our advice was not to go to Pakistan and the advice that we received the last few weeks to tour India has been positive.”
Australia Squad: Ricky Ponting (captain), Michael Clarke (vice-captain), Matthew Hayden, Phil Jaques, Simon Katich, Michael Hussey, Shane Watson, Brad Haddin (wicket-keeper), Brett Lee, Stuart Clark, Mitchell Johnson, Doug Bollinger, Peter Siddle, Bryce McGain and Jason Krejza